Acne can be painful and embarrassing, leaving your face red, bumpy, and tender. Unfortunately, nearly all teens suffer from acne to some degree and go from product to product to combat it. When you just want relief, choosing the best soap can be daunting with so many on the market promising clear skin.
How to Choose an Acne Soap
So, how do you decide which acne soap is right for you or your son or daughter? After all, teens’ skin is as unique as they are. Maybe your son has oily skin and severe acne that presents on his “T-Zone” (forehead and nose). Maybe your daughter has dry skin and all-around acne that leaves scars.
Maybe your teen has a combination skin and moderate acne that you want to tame and keep under control. Whatever your reason (or their situation), using this guide, you can be sure that you’re choosing a cleanser that you can feel good about, and your teen will use daily. Also, it doesn’t hurt that we help parents get the best acne products for the best value.
We’ll begin with the basics. The best acne products will:
- Be non-abrasive, gentle, and free of alcohol.
- Match your skin type – oily, dry, or combination.
- Keep skin hydrated with mineral oil, lanolin, or glycerin.
Later, we’ll also go over the best acne soap available so you can make an informed decision and not waste money trying cleansing formulas at random. Then, we’ll share our top pick to make buying acne products quick and easy.
What Are the Benefits of Acne Soaps and Facial Cleansers?
Unfortunately, if you’re prone to acne, your skin care routine could take more than just using a regular bar of soap and a splash of water. However, if you want to try soap and over-the-counter methods first, they can be as beneficial as dermatologist recommended cleansers.
Obviously, the biggest advantage to using acne soaps and cleansers is clearer skin. (This won’t happen overnight, of course.) More advantages are that chances are, you’ll be able to find a product or two in your price range, so you don’t have to spend lots of money to look and feel better. They can also moisturize your skin, control oil, get rid of bacteria, smooth rough areas, remove dead skin cells, and keep your pores from clogging.
Things to Look for in Acne Products and the Best Way to Use Them
What to look for in acne products depends on your individual needs. Here are some general things to consider when choosing a product:
- Your skin type – oily, dry, or combination.
- Does it have a moisturizing ingredient or will it be drying?
- What do you want out of a cleanser? (Should it unclog pores, stop redness, etc.?)
When you choose soap, the best way to use it is daily. Follow all the package directions and read the warning signs. If you have an allergic reaction, stop use immediately.
How to Not Use Acne Cleansers
There are right and wrong ways to treat acne-prone skin. If you are following a strict, daily regimen and you do not see results of clearer skin, fewer breakouts and less redness, one or more of these reasons may be why:
- You’re scrubbing too hard. Excess scrubbing can cause irritation and lead to more flare-ups.
- You’re using the same washcloth night after night without washing it. Now, this might seem like a no-brainer, but washcloths can collect and house bacteria, making your skin worse
- You’re not washing your face regularly, as in twice a day – morning and night. It’s easy just to use your cleanser every other day, but it’s imperative that you’re consistent.
- You’re only washing your face. Chances are, if you have acne on your face, you have it on your back or the rest of your body.
- You’re not following through. You can follow all these steps and still fall short if you’re not using sunscreen to protect your skin from the sun.
- You continue to use after suffering a rash or hives.
Keep in mind that if your acne doesn’t improve, you should call a dermatologist and talk about your options.
Top 5 Soaps For Acne Prone Skin
Bamboo Charcoal Soap
You may have seen the YouTube videos or even hopped on the bandwagon yourself, but charcoal peel-off face masks are very popular right now – and for a good reason. Charcoal powder detoxifies and re-energizes your skin.
All natural and hypoallergenic, the Bamboo Charcoal Soap by Healing Tree is made of four ingredients and can be used on even the most sensitive skin. It is alcohol-free, has no chemicals, and it’s fragrance-free. Bamboo Charcoal Soap will unclog your pores and release dirt, dead skin cells, and toxins. It also traps odors and pollutants, letting your skin breath.
It works by drawing out deep-down dirt from your pores. In as little as a month, it may eliminate your acne.
This is good for people with oily skin who are looking for an overall clean feeling with acne prevention. It might not be the best option for those with dry or combination skin.
- It’s long-lasting. A box of three bars can last about a year.
- This can be used on any skin color because it won’t bleach or discolor the skin.
- It’s cleansing and not drying.
- Can be used to wash hair.
- May cause breakouts upon initial use.
- Unpleasant odor.
- Could be harsh on sensitive skin.
- My leave film-like residue on the skin.
Dead Sea Mineral Mud
The Dead Sea is rich in magnesium, bromine, salts (approximately 45,000 tons), and other minerals. Minerals are essential to us and makeup 4% of the body. They perform important functions like cell renewal, bone building, activating hormones, producing blood, and nourishing the top layer of skin. A mineral deficiency is likely to cause early aging, dryness, and inflammation.
Aspen Kay Naturals Dead Sea Mineral Mud, nearly black in color from mud and charcoal, is from Israel, organic, preservative-free, and chemical-free. This soap is hand-made and 100% pure. It can be used as a face soap, hand soap, body soap, or shaving soap. It contains over twenty minerals that draw out impurities and dirt particles. Also, the fine grains of the bar scrub and exfoliate your face, removing dead skin and leaving you with a fresh, smooth, clean feeling.
Dead Sea Mineral Mud is an effective treatment for skin disorders, such as acne, eczema, and psoriasis. Here are the other benefits of it:
- Tightens pores to prevent early signs of aging.
- Gives your skin a rejuvenating glow.
- Moisturizes and hydrates.
This soap is universally friendly, but test it on a small patch of skin for best results.
- The natural fragrance of lemon grass, eucalyptus, and peppermint.
- You can send the package back for a full refund if not satisfied.
- Not drying.
- Helps even out skin tone.
- May take up to two weeks to detox skin.
- Bar gets used up quickly (one month average)
- Some users reported breakouts.
Cetaphil Antibacterial Gentle Cleansing Bar
Cetaphil is a trusted name in skincare - they’ve even been voted “Facebook Favorite” in the search for the best acne or skin care products. The Cetaphil company has been around since 1947 and has been a pioneer in making advancements in face wash, scrubs, and lotions. The Cetaphil Antibacterial Gentle Cleansing Bar was created by dermatologists to remove surface bacteria and combat sweat.
But what makes it so unique is that it’s not soap at all – it’s a cleanser that is hypoallergenic and non-irritating. Use this in the bath or shower and on your whole body. It’s even gentle enough for children. There are no harsh ingredients so that it won’t clog pores, and it helps with acne-prone and eczema-prone skin. Also, it won’t leave your skin dry and tight.
The Cetaphil Antibacterial Cleansing Bar is unique in that it deodorizes as well as cleanses. It will eliminate bacteria so you can have fresh, clean skin.
- Pleasant, fresh scent.
- Softens skin.
- Dermatologist recommended.
- Can buy in bulk.
- Some users reported more breakouts.
- May find it to be drying.
- May not be good for long-term use.
Neutrogena Facial Cleansing Bar
Neutrogena began in 1930 as a small, specialty cosmetics retailer called Natone. Founder Emanuel Stolaroff supplied makeup to beauty salons used to ready actors and actresses for a film. In 1994, Neutrogena became associated with Johnson & Johnson where they remain.
What makes this facial cleansing bar unique is it’s transparent so that it won’t leave any film or residue. Specifically for acne prone skin, the Neutrogena Facial Cleansing Bar removes excess oil, doesn’t clog pores, and won’t over-dry the skin. Also, it’s pure and gentle so you can use it every day.
The Neutrogena Facial Cleansing Bar is a great option from a trusted brand. If you plan to use a grocery store product, this should be your first pick.
- Non-comedogenic so it won’t block pores.
- Detergent-free with no dyes.
- Simple and inexpensive.
- May take up to two weeks to see results.
- Will dissolve if left in the water.
- Not fragrance-free.
- The bar is under four ounces in weight.
Organic African Black Soap
African Black Soap is 100% pure, hypoallergenic, vegan, and is one of the best tools against the acne-prone skin because it showcases shea butter. It also has a neat history that is rooted in – you guessed it – Africa.
Creator Sofi Tucker was a nineteen-year-old widow and mother of four when she began selling shea butter (made of shea nuts) in Sierra Leone, Africa in 1912. Then, she moved on to sell African Black Soap and homemade hair and skin preparations. Every purchase of African Black Soap helps disenfranchised women, like Sofi Tucker, realize their dreams for a brighter future.
African Black Soap is considered to African women’s best-kept secret to flawless skin. In fact, it’s been called a miracle because it can heal all skin conditions and lock in moisture. It also fights aging, blemishes, and wrinkles.
This is authentic, high-quality soap that will make you squeaky clean and maybe even change the way you think about skincare.
- Fragrance-free, chemical-free.
- Toner, acne cleanser, and night cream in one.
- Comes with a 30-day money back guarantee.
- Cleans effectively and softens skin.
- Unpleasant smell.
- Maybe harsh or drying.
- Might be messy to use.
- Big block you need to cut into smaller bars.
Despite there being so many types and brands of acne soaps available, we’ve narrowed it down to our personal favorite: The Dead Sea Mineral Mud Soap. For years, people have traveled from across the world to have the chance to hold and apply the Dead Sea’s nutrient-rich mud. It meets the factors you should look for when choosing an acne soap because it’s non-abrasive, has moisturizing ingredients, and can be used on any skin type.
Finding the right acne soap or cleanser doesn’t have to be an impossible task – it just takes a bit of patience, time to research, and effort. Also, keep in mind that any new soap requires time for your skin to adjust (with regular use). If one doesn’t seem to be working, there are many other options (i.e. going from store-bought to organic). Using this guide, you’ll find an acne soap that both you and your skin will love.